Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa reached Tehran on Sunday on a three-day official visit, which is the first official visit of any army chief in over two decades.
Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa reached Tehran on Sunday to hold talks with the Iranian leaders regarding bilateral matters, the military said.
The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor said that the army chief was scheduled to meet Iranian civilian and military leaders.
According to the tweet issued revealing the caution with which the two sides are dealing with the visit that is seen by many as a major development in bilateral relations.
He further said that the COAS meet with meet Iranian civilian and military leadership and would also meet Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.
The visit is expected to narrow the trust deficit between the two neighbours that profess to have ‘brotherly relations’, but have for long been on the opposite sides of the regional alignment and global politics. Their geo-political differences have manifested themselves in lack of cooperation on security issues between the two neighbours.
Islamabad further has reservations about Tehran’s involvement in disputes in Arab world. Iran on the other hand suspiciously looks at Pakistan’s close ties with Arab monarchies.
After appointment as the army chief General Bajwa worked on improving relations with Tehran and met Iranian envoy to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost several times over the past few months.
This gesture showed his approach towards Iran was driven by his understanding that “enhanced Pak-Iran military-to-military cooperation will have a positive impact on regional peace and stability.
According to Director General Noor Institute of Strategic Studies Tehran Dr Sadollah Zarei, speaking at Islamabad Policy Institute said Trump’s new policy for the region has made it all more important for the two neighbours to cooperate.
Iran had raised voice in support of Pakistan after the latter was severely criticised by President Trump while unveiling Washington’s new policy for the region. Later Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif toured Tehran as part of his visit to regional countries for consultations on Trump’s policy.
Analysts believe the start of a military dialogue between Pakistan and Iran would grant credibility to Pakistan’s policy of neutrality in the Middle East/Gulf even if they aren’t immediately able to make major strides towards better relations.
Earlier this week, Iranian Ambassador to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost met the army chief at the General Headquarters and the two discussed “visits and exchanges in defence realm,” according to a statement by the army’s media relations wing, the ISPR